Financial challenges

first_imgA common mantra across the nation is, “things are really hard”. It is a simple and easily understood statement that encapsulates the harsh economic situation many are faced with daily. The belief is that it gets exponentially harder with every passing day. While many analyses have been done to explain its genesis, current realities and future outlook, relief does not appear to be within grasp thereby compounding an already bleak situation.It has become increasingly difficult to find someone who offers a different view in terms of financial challenges being experienced. Even the affluent are not excluded especially those in the business sector. Some within this grouping are adamant that the deck continues to be stacked against them through unpopular tax policies, giving way eventually to decrease in business activities. For them, the mantra is, “things really slow”.Many have spoken candidly but insist on being anonymous out of fear of being the reason to further hurt their business. Paramount is their concern of not wanting to criticize publicly in an effort to avoid any semblance of perceived political partisanship. This is understandable given the reality of repercussion that history painfully reminds of. While many would naturally prefer the protection of anonymity for their lamentations, others seem less constraint.While governments generally cannot meet every need, prioritised national spending is expected to be implemented. Therein lies the profound disappointment and possibly betrayal felt. Coming in with tremendous goodwill on the promise of a better life, expectation was rife. For many, the reality is now harsher and cannot be masked. It would therefore be fair for them to question some aspects of public spending.With D’Urban Park and ministerial salary increases and benefits being recurring decimals, the new monstrous fence around the Ministry of the Presidency may have gone unnoticed. Facelifts and renovations are good but should not be at the expense of the concerns of the nation’s workers.They, the workers, will naturally question the justification for what can be described as diverted priorities. This includes huge sums already spend on furnishing, dietary needs, increase security and additional entourage vehicles. Aspects of these obviously cannot be compromised, however the question of what could have led to a mantra of “urgent priority”, seems only natural.The proposed plantain chip factory in Leguan is left abandoned after millions spent. The initial idea was questioned, but passion for the endeavour and the justification for its construction were not short. What then could have led to the perceived halt in construction and by extension, operation? Were those sums ill-advisedly spent?A plethora of questions can be asked, pertinently in the context of relevance as with other projects have since been abandoned. The multiple Commissions of Inquiry and frequent and extensive overseas travel while monies are being deemed unavailable for workers, are major concerns.Clearly this will be seen as a demotivating factor, for all who toil honestly and laboriously to provide for their families. They can rightfully question priorities regarding their welfare which believably are being ignored as motivation and confidence wane. The unfortunate reality is that they have no choice but to endure as they try to eke out a livelihood. They also have no excuse to their dependents.Unlike the Administration, which seems to be prioritising non-priorities, the workers cannot afford a parallel set of convenient priorities. Of course they would wish so as to free themselves of the heavy burdens carried. That logically derives a mantra of hope while swirling in despair.last_img read more

Jurgen Klopp issues demand to Liverpool players ahead of Sunderland trip

first_img Jurgen Klopp 1 Jurgen Klopp has called on his Liverpool players to show greater consistency ahead of the midweek trip to Sunderland.Results have been mixed since Klopp replaced Brendan Rodgers at Anfield, with the German overseeing four victories, three draws and three defeats.The 1-0 win over Leicester on Boxing Day was the club’s first in four Premier League games and came directly after a woeful 3-0 defeat at Watford.Sunderland will provide Liverpool’s next test at the Stadium of Light on Wednesday and Klopp wants the game to represent the start of a consistent run of form.“There’s no doubt about the individual quality of the players, there’s no doubt about the character,” he said.“What we have to create is a stable level of performance, that’s what we have to work on.“Now the next station is Sunderland and we have to go there and be concentrated from the first second, like we were against Leicester.“(It was) a really good start in that game – I was happy about this – and now we have to do it again.“That’s the thing. If we do this, then we can get results in a row. But it’s no presents, we have to work for it.”Klopp, whose side are 10th in the table, has emphasised the importance of securing three points against Sunderland rather than trying to “show how football should be”.And he is confident his men will take the right mental approach as they face a side currently struggling in second-bottom place.“Now we have to play against Sunderland and we don’t want to go there and show how football should be,” Klopp said.“We’ll go there and want to win – that’s what we have to show.“There’s no reason to doubt the mentality of the team (or worry) that they’ll maybe think ‘it’s only Sunderland’ or anything like that. How I know them, nobody in the team is like this.“We want to improve our situation, we want to develop, and we want to get more points in this very, very important moment in the league, the end of December, January. There are so many points in the end of December and January.“It’s unbelievable and you should take every one you can.”Liverpool are likely to be without striker Divock Origi for Wednesday’s match.Klopp has admitted it would take a ”miracle” for Origi to recover from the hamstring injury he suffered during the Leicester contest and he is expected to join frontman Daniel Sturridge on the sidelines as he works his way back to match fitness from a similar problem.Jordon Ibe has returned to training after illness and a late decision will be taken on his involvement, but fellow midfielder James Milner is still out with a calf injury.last_img read more

Bush set to offer housing aid plan

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREPettersson scores another winner, Canucks beat KingsThe plan is also expected to exclude any borrower whose introductory rate expires before Jan. 1. About $57 billion in subprime loans are scheduled to be “reset” at higher rates in the final three months of this year, according to estimates by First American Loan Performance. Mortgage companies could also exclude borrowers whom they conclude are making enough money to afford higher monthly payments. Barclays Capital – extrapolating from a similar program recently unveiled in California – estimates that only about 12percent of all subprime borrowers, or 240,000 homeowners, would get relief. “From what I’ve heard, I don’t see anything that leads me to believe we will see an increase in loan modifications,” said Eric Halperin, Washington director of the Center for Responsible Lending, a nonprofit group that has studied the subprime problem. The plan is being announced as fallout from the mortgage crisis seeps into the political arena. Until recently, few candidates talked about subprime loans, and few bankers and traders on Wall Street paid much attention to mortgage-crisis declarations on the campaign trail. But with the meltdown growing worse, housing prices still plunging and many economists worrying about a recession, Bush and his Democratic opponents are now racing to come up with answers. `Far less than they need’ Democratic presidential candidates complained that the White House plan was overly narrow. “It seems that President Bush is going to give struggling homeowners far less than they need,” Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York said in a statement Monday. “With news accounts using terms like `whittled down’ and `limited’ to describe the scope of the Bush plan, it appears that the president is pushing a freeze for a very narrow group of borrowers.” Clinton visited the Nasdaq stock market in New York on Wednesday and assailed Wall Street firms for the mortgage mess. She called for a 90-day moratorium on subprime foreclosures and a rate freeze that would apply to all borrowers current on payments and some who have fallen behind. Despite the criticism, the Bush plan is a significant change in an initial reluctance to impose solutions. As recently as a month ago, Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson Jr. argued that lenders should try to work out new terms on a case-by-case basis. But Paulson and federal banking regulators became increasingly impatient with the industry’s failure to produce a systematic, rapid approach to evaluating borrowers. Sheila C. Bair, head of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., proposed a comparatively radical plan to permanently freeze rates on all subprime loans. Paulson rejected that idea, but began to push for a standardized approach that would temporarily freeze rates for many borrowers facing upward adjustments on their monthly payments. Administration officials emphasized that the rate freeze was only one part of a broader plan. Bush will also ask Congress to temporarily expand the authority of states and localities to issue tax-exempt mortgage-revenue bonds to help people refinance their mortgages. Treasury officials are also pushing the industry to come up with a streamlined way to help subprime borrowers refinance with a more conventional, lower-rate mortgage. Subprime loans typically come with high interest rates, and were originally intended for people with poor credit histories. But some analysts say more than one-third of all subprime borrowers could have qualified for cheaper conventional loans at the outset. But there was no sign Wednesday that Bush’s plan would contain new commitments by lenders to help people refinance. Absent any new approaches, borrowers would still be largely on their own to find better deals. Heat on GOP candidates Republican presidential candidates have seemed reluctant to propose government rescue plans, seeing them as a bailout. But they are feeling the heat nonetheless, and some are joining Paulson’s effort to help people in danger of losing their homes. “You don’t want to reward speculators,” said Sen. John McCain of Arizona, a Republican presidential candidate. “You’d like to take each individual case on its own, but there’s no time to do that. What’s important is to stop the bleeding.” John Edwards, a Democratic presidential candidate and former senator from North Carolina, on Wednesday proposed a seven-year freeze in subprime interest rates, as well as a new fund to help distressed borrowers. Edwards also called for a change in bankruptcy laws that would give homeowners far more bargaining power in negotiating new terms. Swing states impacted Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois jumped ahead of many of his Democratic presidential rivals in September, offering detailed recommendations that included a government rescue fund, changes in bankruptcy law and a new tax credit on mortgage interest for people who do not itemize their taxes and cannot currently deduct their interest payments. Adding to the political pressure, many of the states that are hardest hit by mortgage defaults and falling home prices are important election swing states. They include Florida, Ohio, Michigan and Pennsylvania. The first two primary states, Iowa and New Hampshire, have not been particularly hard hit by the housing crisis, but two of the states with early nominating contests – Florida and Nevada – have among the worst problems in the country. “Even though foreign policy has been dominating the election for the past year, economics will pay a bigger role next year,” said Howard Glaser, a mortgage industry consultant who worked in President Clinton’s administration and is an adviser to Hillary Clinton’s campaign. “Not only will the specific mortgage and housing problems intensify, the ripple effects on the economy will also magnify.”160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! WASHINGTON – The Bush administration reached an agreement with the mortgage industry Wednesday on a plan to freeze interest rates for up to five years for a portion of the 2million homeowners who bought houses in the past few years with subprime loans. The plan, hammered out after weeks of talks among Treasury officials, mortgage lenders and Wall Street firms, would allow distressed borrowers who are current on their payments to keep their low introductory rates and escape an increase of 30 percent or more in their monthly payments when the rates expire. Democratic lawmakers and presidential contenders criticized the plan for being too timid and promoted more-ambitious proposals of their own. The agreement, to be formally announced today by President Bush, is expected to contain numerous limitations that would exclude many – if not most – subprime borrowers, according to industry executives who have seen it. It would exclude those who are delinquent on their payments – about 22 percent of all subprime borrowers, according to First American Loan Performance, an industry research firm. last_img

Listen: Cloughaneely reserve manager Adrian Houston on IFC B success

first_imgCloughaneely had three points to spare this afternoon in the Intermediate B final against Red Hugh’s.It could be the first leg of that the locals around Falcarragh way hope will be a double, with the seniors taking on St Naul’s afterwards. Reserve team manager Adrian Houston spoke to Charlie Collins after the 0-12 to 0-9 win. Listen: Cloughaneely reserve manager Adrian Houston on IFC B success was last modified: October 13th, 2019 by Chris McNultyShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:2019 Donegal IFC BCloughaneelylast_img read more

Leeds fans show Lucas the love

first_img3 May 2005The largest crowd of the season packed in at Leeds United’s Elland Road on Monday to show their support for Lucas Radebe’s 10 years with the club as an International Eleven tackled a Leeds United Eleven in a star-studded benefit match.Over £300 000 (R3.47-million) was raised towards Radebe’s target of £500 000 (R5.79-million), which he wants to donate to eight charities.Lucas Radebe“The Chief” grew up in one of the toughest parts of Soweto during a violent time in SA’s history. That he went on to became one of the English Premier League’s most respected players – and SA’s most-capped footballer – is in many ways a miracle.Radebe’s benefit brought together a number of former fan favourites in the Leeds United Eleven. Gordon Strachan, Tony Yeboah, Gary McAllister, David Wetherall, Nigel Martyn and Vinnie Jones all took to the field to huge applause.On the other side of the ground, World Eleven goalkeeper Bruce Grobbelaar showed off his eccentric ways, while Nigerian midfield maestro Jay-Jay Okocha mesmerised the fans with his skills.On field actionThe Leeds United Eleven was first on the scoresheet when Aaron Lennon followed up a Gary McAllister shot that Grobbelaar could only tip away to score.Besikatas striker and Norwegian international Jon Carew pulled the World Eleven level with a shot from the edge of the area, and Dutch international Mario Melchiot also struck to put the World side one-clear at the break.All through the game, players on both sides – because he played for both sides – attempted to lay on a goal for “The Chief”, and it eventually came in the second half when he was cut down by Gary Kelly in the penalty area.Lucas scoresRadebe took the spot kick, sending goalkeeper Neil Sullivan the wrong way, to put the World Eleven 3-1 up to rapturous applause from the crowd.Leeds Ladies’ striker Lucy Ward then reduced the deficit to one goal when she beat Grobbelaar after a run from the halfway line.The World Eleven stormed back, though, with former Leeds man Gunnar Halle setting up Ally McCoist and Jay-Jay Okocha for goals, which put them 5-2 in front.McCoist struck again to make it 6-2 before Matthew Kilgallon pulled one back for the Leeds Eleven with a chip over Grobbelaar to make it 6-3.Cherry on the topThe game, though, was all about Lucas Radebe, and he put the cherry on the top with his second goal of the contest, a curling, unstoppable shot from the edge of the area to made the final score 7-3 for the World Eleven.In news that many Leeds fans will welcome, Radebe revealed that Leeds United coach Kevin Blackwell has asked him to consider a coaching role with the club. However, there are plenty of people interested in the popular former South Africa captain.Radebe says he has been approached by the South African Football Association. “They wanted me to get involved earlier”, he said, “but I’ve stalled them because I had a job to finish at Leeds.”Return to Kaizer Chiefs?In the long term, Radebe sees his former club, Kaizer Chiefs, as another option, and the Amakhosi would surely welcome “The Chief” back into their fold.Then there is Fifa. Football’s world governing body have made contact with Radebe and extended a number of invitations to meet with him.Before he looks that far ahead, however, Radebe says he is desperate to play one last game for Leeds United. They face Rotherham in their final Coca-Cola Championship match of the season on Sunday.Radebe, who has turned out 261 times for the Whites, says he has spoken to coach Blackwell about getting a run, and Blackwell has told him he will “create something” for him.Leeds fans would no doubt enjoy the opportunity to show their love for the man they call “The Chief” once more.Lucas’s charity benefactorsSOS Children’s VillagesA worldwide charity providing a whole living environment for orphaned children. The mission statement of SOS is “helping children who have nothing and no one”. The charity was recently confirmed as Fifa’s charity partner for World Cup 2006.Open Arms MalawiMalawi suffers from one of the highest recorded incidences of HIV/Aids. Open Arms Infant Home is a transition home providing 40 Aids orphans with food, medicine and security. It also acts as a hospice to those babies who carry the HIV virus.StarfishStarfish supports South African children who have been orphaned or made vulnerable by HIV/Aids. By 2010 an estimated 2.3-million children could be orphaned as a result of Aids in SA. Instead of being overwhelmed by the magnitude of the pandemic, Starfish believes in helping each child, one at a time.Lineham FarmLineham Farm is a residential centre on the northern outskirts of Leeds which offers rural activities and outdoor pursuits to children and young people from less privileged communities in the region.Martin HouseOne of only a very few dedicated hospices for young people and children, Martin House operates almost entirely on donated funds.Variety Club of Great BritainThe Variety Club, Yorkshire region, improve the lives of sick, disabled and disadvantaged children throughout the region by helping to fund Sunshine Coaches, wheelchairs, specialist equipment and numerous other projects.ChildlineChildline is the United Kingdom’s free, 24-hour helpline for children in distress or danger. Trained volunteer counsellors comfort, advise and protect children and young people who feel they have nowhere else to turn. Everyday around 4 000 children call Childline, but lack of funds means that only 1 800 of them can get through.Teenage Cancer Unit at Leeds Teaching HospitalsThe six-bed Teenage Cancer Unit at St James’s provides a specially designed service that delivers expert medical, therapeutic, supportive and social care in a “home from home” environment for teenagers and young adults with cancer and for their families across Yorkshire.Source: Leeds United Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

Ninety years on golden wings

first_imgLooking like a hornet about to strike, theMirage IIICZ “Black Widow” preparesfor takeoff. (Image: Christo Crous, Patrick’s Aviation) The Silver Falcons thrilled the crowd withtheir daring aerobatics. (Image: Justin de Reuck) MEDIA CONTACTS • SAAF MuseumPublic relations+27 12 351 2290 RELATED ARTICLES • Choppers to curb 2010 crime• SA pilots bring air aid to Africa • Swedish army prefers SA vehicle • SA’s aerospace industry takes off • OR Tambo ready for World CupJanine ErasmusThe South African Air Force (SAAF) celebrates 90 years in the air this year – a milestone marked in August with a spectacular air show hosted by the South African Air Force Museum. The event was the only one scheduled to be hosted by the air force in 2010, and took place under the theme 90 Years on Golden Wings.SAAF is one of the world’s oldest air forces, established on 1 February 1920. The annual Air Force Day, held as close as possible to this date each year, was therefore especially meaningful in 2010.According to SAAF spokesperson Colonel Bill de Pinho, the air force is extremely proud of its history.“Over the years we’ve become known for our expertise and our fighting ability and fighting capabilities,” he said, “especially during World War Two and also during the Korean War.”De Pinho felt the air force should rather describe itself as “90 years young”, as there is still a long way to go.“We’ve gone through a lot of changes and I think especially that the acquisition of new aircraft has helped the air force to develop in a very positive manner.”The SAAF played an important role in security operations for the 2010 Fifa World Cup, which took place around South Africa in June and July.Lieutenant General Carlo Gagiano, chief of the air force, said recently at a media briefing that during the World Cup the SAAF deployed over 2 200 personnel, conducted aerial surveillance, and provided backup for the police in terms of transport and supply.Operation Kgwele (Setswana, meaning “ball”) was three years in the planning, and began in May. The SAAF entertained the air show crowd with a few procedures from Kgwele, including soldiers skimming down ropes from locally developed Denel M1 Oryx helicopters, a hijacked bus rescue, and a hijacked civilian craft forced to land.Distinguished serviceThe show, which is thought to have attracted a record crowd, took place at Swartkop air field near Pretoria. Established in 1921, Swartkop falls under the management of Waterkloof air base, about 6km away. It is a proclaimed heritage site and home to one of the three branches of the Air Force Museum – the other branches are found at Ysterplaat air base in Cape Town and at the Port Elizabeth airport.According to the SAAF, Swartkop is the oldest air station in the country and the second oldest in the world, as well as being the oldest currently operational station in the world.Two squadrons, the SAAF Museum Historic Flight and the Airspace Control Unit, make their base here. Swartkop also hosts a range of craft, both operational and in the museum. This facility boasts over 150 distinguished craft such as the Mirage IIIBZ and IIICZ, the DHC-1 Chipmunk T MK 10, the Shackleton MR.3 and the Spitfire Mk IXe.The SAAF’s Mirage IIICZ, the Black Widow, is the only one in the world still flying. It retired from the air force in 1990.Memorable occasionA number of other anniversaries made this year’s SAAF air show memorable. Among them are the 75th anniversary of the first flight of the Douglas C-47 Dakota, which has served the SAAF since 1943, the 60th birthday of the De Havilland Vampire T55, which was the SAAF’s first training jet, and the 50th birthday of the Alouette helicopter.Further afield, 2010 marked the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Britain, the German air campaign that took place in August and September 1940, and 50 years since the Korean War, which broke out in June 1960.Other operational craft on show included the Saab Gripen D dual-seater fighter, which debuted at last year’s Swartkop air show, Agusta A109 helicopters, a Lockheed Martin C130BZ Hercules, and the Cheetah-D two-seater, developed in South Africa. The single-seater Gripen C fighter, which arrived in February 2010, was seen for the first time. The Gripen features the new IRIS-T air-to-air missile.In the vintage department, crowds got a glimpse of a Vampire, a C-47 Dakota, Puma and Alouette II and III helicopters, and more. In addition, the museum’s hangars were open to the public all day. Civilian-piloted craft included a De Havilland DH82A Tiger Moth, an Impala Mk1 fighter craft, and Pitts Specials, among others.The Silver Falcons, the air force’s aerobatics display team based at Langebaanweg in the Cape, put on a performance of virtuoso flying in their Pilatus PC-7 MkII Astra trainers, as did the Flying Lions in their Harvards.“It’s excellent to see the number of people here,” said De Pinho, “especially youngsters.” He estimated that around 50 000 people attended, substantially more than the 30 000 who were initially expected.The air force’s annual Prestige Awards, held to pay tribute to the outstanding achievements of SAAF units and personnel, were also handed out at the air show.last_img read more

Rapelang Rabana: shaping the world

first_imgRapelang Rabana addresses the groupat the WEF Young Global Shakers gathering in Davos. The keyword is access, says Rabana.(Images: Global Shapers) MEDIA CONTACTS • Yeigo Communications  +27 21 424 2675 • Rapelang Rabana  Global Research and Development  The Telfree Group  @rapelangrabana RELATED ARTICLES • Social media growing strong in SA • Africa’s telecoms growth potential • SA at Davos: 20 years after Mandela • Internet promotes African freedom • Education goes mobile with VodacomEmily van RijswijckSouth African ICT entrepreneur and businesswoman Rapelang Rabana was a member of the first-ever delegation of young global shapers to the recently concluded World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland.The annual gathering took place from 25 to 29 January under the theme The Great Transformation: Shaping New Models.Global shapers are between the ages of 20 and 30 and are considered by WEF as having the potential to be leaders in all sectors of the global society.The 70-strong group included 20 young CEOs, a nanotechnology professor, a 24-year-old mayor from the Philippines and a bio-engineer who created a cardiac surgery simulator now used worldwide.The WEF website notes that with half of the world’s population under the age of 27, it is vital that young voices are heard at the annual meeting.WEF founder Klaus Schwab refers to his group of global shapers as “digital natives” who have grown up with the internet. The shapers were able to engage with world leaders during the annual meeting, and to give their perspectives on global problems such as unemployment among young people.Rabana, now 27, is no stranger to news headlines, having left her mark at a young age in the hugely competitive telecommunications field dominated largely by the huge conglomerates.In 2008 she was one of 200 young South Africans identified by the Mail & Guardian in their annual list of people with whom one should have lunch. The list, compiled by the weekly newspaper, showcases the country’s young trendsetters and trailblazers in their respective fields.Soft-spoken and eloquent, this University of Cape Town (UCT) business science graduate shared her vision on the WEF’s global shaper channel on YouTube. She said it is all about “access” – to opportunities, education, knowledge, ideas or other people – in order to secure a better future.She added: “I want to continue to find ways to deliver life-changing services. I see access to Davos as an opportunity to extend the reach and potential of my greatest aspirations.”Communication pioneerAnd helping people to have easier access to communications is exactly what Rabana set out to do when she started Yeigo Communications back in 2007 with two fellow UCT graduates.Yeigo was South Africa’s first mobile voice over internet protocol (Voip) company, and offered a software platform for voice calls made via mobile data networks. This was compatible with a wide range of mobile phones, and could be done at a fraction of the cost of conventional voice call networks.Yeigo’s business model worked on the same lines as Skype, another popular Voip application, and soon caught the attention of overseas investors.Just one year after starting to offer their services, Yeigo made a major global breakthrough with the multi-million sale of a stake in the company to US-based Quality One Wireless.Now heading up the Global Research and Development division at Swiss-based telecommunications company Telfree, with which Yeigo has partnered, Rabana’s dream is to continue doing what she does so well – making links and connecting ideas on a greater scale so that all South Africans can have some chance at changing their lives through mobile access.“Mobile broadband takes access to a new level,” she said. “These are engaging and exposing people to another world out there. The ways to make an impact are endless.”Ambassador for UN youth initiativeRabana was also chosen as ambassador for the 2011 World Summit Youth Awards (WSYA), a UN information communications technology initiative.  In this role she encourages young South Africans in the fields of electronic technology to take part in the initiative and in so doing, receive recognition for their efforts. Getting recognition through WSYA, while it holds no monetary value, is a sure way to attract likeminded people.The competition selects the best digital projects, products, applications and services by young people. Projects are chosen for efforts in reducing poverty and hunger, tackling ill-health, gender inequality, lack of education, lack of access to clean water and environmental collapse – all issues which tap into the UN’s millennium development goals.The award is promoted throughout the 160 UN member states to encourage young people to use their knowledge of the internet and mobile technology to create ways to put the development goals into action.last_img read more

Banyana edge Ghana on penalties

first_img22 March 2012Banyana Banyana edged Ghana, ranked second in Africa, by five goals to four from the penalty spot after the teams had played to a 1-1 draw in an international friendly at Dobsonville Stadium in Soweto on Wednesday.South Africa’s goalkeeper, Thoko Mndaweni, starred by pulling off a superb save, diving to her left, from Ghana captain Florence Okoe in the penalty shootout. She then stepped up to slot the final spot kick to give Banyana the victory.Sport and Recreation Minister Fikile Mbalula was on hand to hand over the winner’s trophy to Banyana captain Amanda Dlamini.‘A good test’“The Ghana team gave us a good test, and these are the kind of matches we need before we get to London. We created a lot of chances but were not able to convert them,” said Banyana coach Joseph Mkhonza.In a clash played in front of a large crowd in chilly, wet conditions, Banyana showed just how much they have learned and improved by taking on top-class nations at the recent Cyprus Women’s Cup as they took the challenge to Ghana.The home side, ranked fourth in Africa, was unlucky not to go into the lead after just five minutes of play when striker Andisiwe Mgcoyi rose high to head home past Ghanaian goalkeeper Nana Ama-Asanetewaa, but Zimbabwean referee Pamela Chiwaya ruled that the tall South African forward had infringed on the visitor’s goalkeeper.GoalWith the South Africans looking dangerous on attack, a cross from the right struck the hand of Ghanaian defender Janet Egyir, and from the resulting penalty kick, Banyana Banyana striker Noko Matlou scored her 54th goal in her 69th international appearance as she fired the hosts into the lead in the 22nd minute.Clearly feeling the effects of several physical challenges from the first half, Ama-Asanetewaa was replaced at the start of the second half by Patricia Mantey, who did well to blunt several South African challenges.The home side had good opportunities to score more goals, with Mgcoyi presented with two superb close chances which were not capitalized on, while Matlou spooned a header over the cross bar just after half-time.EqualiserGhana managed to find the equaliser seven minutes into the second half, when goalkeeper Mndaweni mistimed a clearance effort which hit Mercy Myles and ended in the back of the South African goal net.Striker Sanah Mollo and winger Leandra Smeda got into the action in the second half at the expense of Mgcoyi and Mary Ntsweng, but the home side was not able to find the net again in open play.Refiloe Jane also got on to the park for Banyana Banyana in the fourth minute of optional time in the second half to earn her second cap, taking over from injured team captain Dlamini.Player of the matchIn delivering her usual level of consistency in the South African rearguard, central defender Janine van Wyk collected the Sasol Diski Queen (Player of the Match) award.After the contest, Banyana coach Joseph Mkhonza emphasized that the search is still on for players who can add additional value to the Banyana Banyana campaign at the London Olympics.“We still have a few training camps coming up, starting with the High Performance Centre in Potchefstroom on Thursday (22 March),” said Mkhonza.“We will use these camps to work on our finishing because if you look at this match, and the tournament in Cyprus, we failed to score the opportunities we created. But we should be able to rectify these errors by the end of our training camps,” added Mkhonza, who will be conducting workshops and player trials at the Sasol League Road Shows in Polokwane (Saturday, 31 March) and Nelspruit (Saturday, 14 April).Banyana Banyana’s training camp in Potchefstroom ends on 31 March.SAinfo reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

Five arrests after theft, Highway 63 chase

first_imgFive Jefferson City stealing suspects are now in jail after a police chase.Authorities say the suspects took more than $3,000 worth of clothes from the Dick’s Sporting Goods store on Stoneridge Parkway at the capital on Sunday afternoon.Officers spotted the alleged getaway car on Missouri Boulevard, and tried to stop it. They say that car took off, across the Missouri River and onto Highway 63.Highway Patrol troopers used spike strips to stop the car on Highway 63 near Ashland.Police say the five suspects are from Columbia: Laronya Brown, 21; Erneisha Dorema, 18; Tashianna Pitts, 28; Antanesha Jones, 17; and Reginald Guy, 27.(This story was last updated at 7:55 a.m. Tuesday.)last_img

Three Questions About Japan’s Nuclear Plants

first_img Japanese officials are weighing a set of difficult challenges in trying to contain the nuclear crisis within the Fukushima power complex. In addition to the extremely powerful earthquake, the nuclear industry has rarely faced simultaneous partial or complete meltdowns in multiple reactors at one site. Here are three key questions experts are grappling with: Can Fukushima Reactor #2 be cooled without blowing the containment vessel? 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(A meltdown is well explained here.) Adding water to the reactor is crucial to maintaining safe temperatures and halting any meltdown that may have started. But that creates steam, which raises the pressure within the reactor vessel. “You don’t want to destroy” the vessel, Robert Alvarez, a former senior policy adviser with the U.S. Department of Energy, explained to reporters on a conference call this afternoon. Adding seawater, which is what crews have done to try to stop the overheating, is “the least bad option,” he said (it generally makes the reactor inoperable). But an hour after Alvarez spoke, it emerged that this option failed, at least temporarily. Trouble with vents that relieve the pressure within the vessel had complicated the shutdown effort, because more water cannot be added if the pressure cannot be regulated. Have spent fuel storage facilities been damaged? The explosions that rocked reactors #1 and #3 were caused by high temperature hydrogen in steam reacting with oxygen. The explosions may have damaged cooling pools. The pools, as deep as 30 meters, hold fuel rods that have been used in the reactor. The rods are cooled for several years to prevent a fire or the release of radionuclides. But after its outer building exploded today, satellite photos of reactor #3 showed fallen fuel cask cranes and damage to various concrete structures, said Alvarez. The pools are massive, reinforced structures built of concrete and steel as much as a meter thick. Were they damaged? Alvarez wondered whether apparent steam plumes visible in the photos were water coming off of the spent fuel pool. Loss of water from the pools could lead the spent fuel to rise in temperature, causing the zirconium cladding which encases the fuel rods to catch on fire. Zirconium fires could lead to massive amounts of radioactive cesium being emitted from the spent fuel and spewed into the atmosphere as part of the smoke. “It’s worrisome, but I don’t think there’s evidence of a zirconium fire,” said Alvarez. But that risk remains real. Why have four methods of cooling failed in the Fukushima reactor complex? Shaking from the earthquake—or water from the tsunami rushed into the reactor complex—damaged the normal pumping system, powered by the electrical grid, that keeps coolant flowing through the reactor. That should have triggered startup of an on site diesel-powered pumping system, but that system failed as well. A third backup effort, which uses steam formed in the running of the reactor to make water for cooling, either failed or worked for only a short amount of time in several of the reactors. Finally, efforts to bring outside power through mobile generators apparently failed as well. The reason for the final failure is “unclear,” says retired nuclear engineer Howard Shaffer, a member of the American Nuclear Society’s public information committee, although a problem with the plant’s electrical system is one possibility. One thing that seems certain, he says, is that the earthquake and tsunami were “much more than what [the reactor complex] was designed for.” DigitalGlobe-Imagery last_img read more